ANCA’S Statement


23 July 2009

The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) issued the following
statement in regard to the Nagorno Karabakh peace process:

On the occasion of the July 17-18 meetings of the Presidents of
Armenia and Azerbaijan in Moscow, in regard to the Nagorno Karabakh
peace process, under the auspices of the Organization for Security
and Cooperation in Europe Minsk Group (OSCE), the ANCA reiterates its
long-standing position that any resolution must be acceptable to the
people of both Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh.

The meetings follow the joint declaration by the presidents of the
United States, France and Russia on July 10, at the recent Group of
Eight conference in Italy, in which the presidents instructed the
‘mediators to present to the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan an
updated version of the Madrid Document of November 2007, the Co-Chairs’
last articulation of the Basic Principles,’ and urged the parties to
‘resolve the few remaining differences….’

The issues are complex and will require time to reach a solution that
is acceptable to all parties, and most specifically to the citizens
of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic. Throughout the ongoing negotiation
process, and again on July 16, the Armenian Government has stated that
no agreement can be reached without the concurrence of the government
and citizens of Nagorno Karabakh. We fully endorse that policy and urge
the Minsk Group Co-Chairs to ensure that the government of Nagorno
Karabakh joins the negotiation process as soon as possible. We note
that the OSCE Co-Chairs have repeatedly, and as recently as July 8,
called for the inclusion of Nagorno Karabakh.

We urge the United States, in particular, to ensure the fulfillment
of President Barack Obama’s campaign pledge ‘to work for a lasting
and durable settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict that is
agreeable to all parties, and based upon America’s founding commitment
to the principles of democracy and self determination.’ The ANCA
also recalls the leadership of the United States Senate and the
passage of S.J. Res. 178 in 1989, which expressed U.S. support
for ‘the fundamental rights and the aspirations of the people of
Nagorno-Karabagh.’ Moreover, the ANCA strongly supports the fundamental
rights of the people of Nagorno Karabakh, and its independence from
foreign rule and oppression. To that end, we support the efforts of
the governments of Nagorno Karabakh and Armenia.

For more than two decades the ANCA has committed its resources to
the pursuit of the just cause of the Armenian people of Nagorno
Karabakh. We have played an instrumental role in Congress, from
the Senate adoption of S.J. Res. 178, to the enactment of Section
907 of the FREEDOM Support Act, which prohibits U.S. assistance to
Azerbaijan until its dual blockades of Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh
are lifted. We will continue to strongly support maximum assistance and
aid to Nagorno Karabakh to further promote its democratic development
and overcome the consequences of Azerbaijan’s aggression.

Therefore, we call upon the presidents of the United States, France
and Russia, whose nations collectively serve as the OSCE’s Minsk
Group co-chairs, to denounce Azerbaijan’s ongoing war rhetoric and its
threats for a resumption of military action. A new war will not only
undermine the peace process, but will also lead to the destabilization
of the South Caucasus.

The ANCA stands united with all Armenians to protect the freedom and
security of the Nagorno Karabakh people in the face of these most
serious external threats. The suffering endured and the sacrifices
made by Armenians since the Armenian Genocide deserves nothing less.